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Roger Goodell Addresses Sports Betting Ahead of Big Game

The NFL is bringing its biggest show to the gambling capital of America and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell wants you to know that everything is fine. Speaking at a press conference in Las Vegas this week ahead of Super Bowl LVIII, Goodell addressed the challenges his league is facing as regulated sports betting.

The chief issue for the league, according to Goodell, is protecting the integrity of the game as regulated sports betting spreads across the land. “The integrity of our game is critical. And so, we spend a lot of time focusing on that, educating, making sure that all of our personnel are aware of our gambling policies, in this case, or any other policy that can affect the integrity of our game,” he said in comments reported on by Yahoo! Sports.

In the wake of multiple players suspensions due to a variety of gambling violations, Goodell stressed the importance of making certain that players are not only not wagering on their own teams, but not really wagering at all. “We clarified our policy earlier this year, and it was to put the importance for our players betting on NFL games or inside information or anything that would negatively impact the integrity of our game is absolutely off limits,” he said.

The mere fact that Goodell was speaking in Las Vegas ahead of a game that’s going to be played at the home of the NFL’s Vegas franchise speaks volumes about how far the NFL has come in its relationship with regulated sports betting. For decades, Las Vegas was deemed unworthy of any professional sports team due to the perceived threat of game-fixing by mob-connected sports betting interests. How times have changed.